A lovely bonbon box from the period of Charles X, it dates towards 1830 and originates from a Charles X period collection in France.
Boxes in this genre were produced for such a short period of time in history. They were very individual as they were entirely handmade by an artisan. Intended to be purchased and filled with fine small candies, the were adorned with classic designs of the period. This box has a distinctly masculine countenance, with a beautiful cameo medallion featuring a Roman soldier.
The box is fashioned from hard paper board. The outer edges are covered with gauffred paper (paper with a pressed, raised design, in this case, repeating leaves). The lid of the box holds the very delicate design in a sandwich position. The design consists of silk roping, beads in deep green and red, onyx oval medallion and a fine hand cut limestone cameo profile. Each piece of the design was affixed to the bottom piece of glass. A convex (thick) glass piece was then placed over the top and sealed by scalloped, gilded Dresden paper. You can see the interior of the box through the glass (the bottom of the box is orange. The outer bottom of the box has pretty flower patterned paper serving as a lining.
It measures: 1" tall and 3" in diameter. It is in good antique condition: the gauffred paper had darkened with age, The top gilded Dresden paper has a couple of missing fleur de lis. There are no visible chips or cracks to the glass, the cameo and onyx medallions are in good order, the design is intact.
The clear lid make this box unusual. Though it was designed for candy, it would be equally exquisite for use as a pocket watch holder or jewelry display box (for that special piece of heirloom jewelry). It is a gorgeous example from the period of Charles X.
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French Antiques: 19th Century French Smalls: Sewing, Religious, Bronze Figures-French Books and Bindings